How to arrange a new Herbarium?

erast e.parmasto at ZBI.EE
Tue Feb 5 12:48:27 CST 2002

Steve Halford wrote:

> Another point not yet raised is that computers can do a much better job of
> arranging data alphabetically than they can phylogenetically :O)
> ........ Preparing a systematic catalog of an alphabetically arranged collection
> would not be so easily accomplished.

   Not at all! It is possible to rearrange the system in your
collection database any time (or, say, once a year - according to
last news in taxonomy). Moreover, you may have the data arranged
according to different classifications (as different files). - Any
systematic arrangement of specimens except alphabetical one will be
out of date very soon.
   Much more important than arrangement of specimens (alphabetically
or according to some system) is WHAT PROGRAMS and what kind of
database is in use in the herbarium. Alas! In herbaria, tens
(possibly hundreds) of different types of databases / programs are in
use, most of these not very professional and usually not easily
compatible with each other. This is the main question to discuss, I
   Erast Parmasto
Erast Parmasto
Institute of Zoology and Botany
181 Riia St., 51014 Tartu, Estonia
Tel -372 7 383 027   Fax -372 7 383 013

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